Pulsatilla vulgaris (formerly Anemone pulsatilla) – Pasque Flower is an old-fashioned cottage garden favourite and an RHS Award of Garden Merit winner. It bears large (1.5″ wide) nodding blooms of violet purple (occasionally white) from March to May. These are nicely contrasted by ferny greyish-green basal foliage. Grows 6-12″ high by 12″ wide. Hardy to zone 3.
Pulsatilla vulgaris ‘Red Bells’ (syn. ‘Rote Glocke’, ‘Red Cloak’, ‘Red Clock’) – This cultivar of Pasque Flower bears slightly nodding bright red blooms with contrasting golden stamens. The flowers are followed by feathery seed heads that may germinate and naturalize around the parent plant. Pulsatilla is drought tolerant once established. Grows 6-12″ high by 12″ wide. Zone 3.
Pulsatilla montana – Mountain Pasque Flower is a native of well-drained meadows in the European Alps. It produces variable dark coloured blooms of a rich maroon-red or deep lilac. It is best grown in full sun with rich, well-drained soil and is a rare find in cultivation. Flowers in early spring, usually starting sometime in April. Grows 8-10″ high by 10-12″ wide. Hardy to zone 5.
Pulsatilla vulgaris ‘Pearl Bells’ (syn. ‘Perlen Glocke’) – A truly unusual cultivar of Pasque Flower with cupped blooms of the softest pink held above fern-like greenish-grey foliage. The flowers might easily be mistaken for Crocus at a distance. Older plants can be propagated by division in early fall. May go summer dormant in the heat. Grows 6-12″ high by 12″ wide. Hardy to zone 3.
Pulsatilla vulgaris ‘Blue Bells’ (syn. ‘Blaue Glocke’) – Another German Pasque Flower cultivar with purplish-blue flowers (there may be some variation in tone) contrasted by golden-yellow stamens. These are borne from April to May over very fine fern-like silvery-green foliage. It will also attract some of the early butterflies when in bloom. Grows 6-12″ high by 12″. Zone 3.